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Bear World - Rules Lite Narrative RPG

 
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Hiram McDaniels
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Joined: 15 Sep 2014
Posts: 283

PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:42 am    Post subject: Bear World - Rules Lite Narrative RPG Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Bear World

A rules-lite narrative RPG set in a world of magic and mystery, monsters and heroes; A world under the ever-present threat of invasion by quantum bears from the Elemental Plane of Bears.

In Bear World, you can attempt any action that your imagination can dream up:

    Want to magically pluck a meteor from the sky and hurl it at your foes? Yes you can!
    Want to rip a great oak tree from the ground and wield it like a club? Go right ahead!
    Want to summon an army of giant robots that combine to form even gianter robots? Of course!
    Want to con an entire nation into thinking you are the rightful king and heir with a smile and a wink? You do you, bro!
    Want to scry on an evil sorcerer king and teleport into his commode while he's on the toilet? No. That's cheating, you goddamn munchkin.


Be warned though: dabbling with the mysterious forces of the universe can bestow great power, but there is also the threat of bears!

The Basics

Anything you want to attempt in the game can be resolved by one simple and intuitive mechanic:

Declare your action: tell the Bear Master (henceforth referred to as “BM”) what you want to happen, what Trait you are using (more on these later) and how you plan to make it happen.

Roll the dice: roll 2d6 + The relevant trait; the results determine success or failure:

6- = Failure. You do not succeed in your action. Bears appear.
7-9 = Partial success; You barely manage to succeed in your action, but now there are bears.
10+ = Critical success! An amazing effort! You totally succeed in your action! And there's bears!

It's really that easy!

Character Creation

Unlike other games, Bear World does not have set stats and skills like Strength or Agility or Stealth. Instead, players get to define their own Traits, allowing them to make any kind of character they can imagine.

Here's how it works. Think of a character concept that you want to play and distill that into three broad traits, and simply rank those traits in order of importance from 3 to 1. This will determine the bonus that is applied to each trait:

    Rank 1 = + 2 bonus to Action rolls.
    Rank 2 = +4 bonus to Action rolls
    Rank 3 = +6 bonus to action rolls.


Each time your character gains a level, you can buy a new Trait at Rank 1, or you can promote an existing trait up to Rank 3.
Your Traits can be anything you can dream up, form powers to skills to personality quirks. They can be things like:

    Wielder of the Sun Sword
    Champion of the Wolf Tribe
    Wandering Samurai
    Mage of the Silver Tower
    Mystical Gunslinger
    Arcane Engineer
    Raider of Ancient Tombs
    Court Jester
    Proficient Juggler
    Always Remembers Birthdays
    Emotional Sponge
    Introverted-Intuitive-Thinking-Judgment
    Sassy Haircut
    Todd!


These are just suggestions. Feel free to let your imagination soar when coming up with your own Traits.

Next record your Life Points on your character sheet, which at character creation is 6 + if you brought snacks or not. At each new level, you will roll 1d6 and add the result to your Life Point total.

Roll 5d6 and record the total under wealth. You will use this to buy starting gear:

Weapons
    Good – 30 credits; 3d6 + Level damage
    Average – 15 credits; 2d6 + Level damage
    Poor – 7 credits; 1d6 + Level damage


Armor
    Good – 100 credits; +3 to Defense rolls
    Average – 25 credits; +2 to Defense rolls
    Poor – 50 credits; +1 to Defense rolls; +1 to Action rolls


Adventurer's Kit – 10 credits

This contains useful things that adventurers use in the course of their expeditions. It contains:

    Torches
    Rope
    Mirror
    Chalk
    Goat
    10 ft. Pole
    Tinderbox
    Mixed CD
    Travel-sized Stratego game
    Toothbrush and 3 oz. Bottle of Scope brand mouth wash


Lastly, be sure to flesh out the fine details on your character sheet: height, weight, eye color, hair color, political affiliation, HIV status, dominant hand, blood glucose level, etc.

Advancement

Over the course of your character's career, he or she will gain experience and grow in power. This progress is tracked through Milestones. These are events that help shape the character and realize their ultimate potential.

Throughout the game, the BM will mark milestones for each player character where appropriate. Milestones can be any formative experience, but should be limited to more novel occurrences like:

    Defeating a powerful foe
    Overcoming a daunting obstacle
    Completing a long journey
    Outsmarting your competition
    A crushing defeat
    Quitting that job you hate
    Coming out to your parents
    Evolving on the issue of climate change
    Standing up for yourself when someone cuts in front of you in line
    Telling your landlord what you REALLY think of her


When a character gains a number of Milestones equal to 3 + his/her current level, they gain a new level and with it more damage, new Traits, and more Life Points. And of course, more bears.

Character LevelMilestones NeededLife PointsDamageTrait Points AccumulatedNo. of Bears Appearing
1061d601d4
24+1d62d6+11d6
35+1d62d6+22d6
47+1d63d6+32d8
58+1d63d6+41d20
69+1d64d6+53d10
710+1d64d6+64dF
811+1d65d6+76 Bears
912+1d65d6+8d%
1013+1d66d6+9A Gajiggidy Bears


Combat

From time to time, your characters will find yourselves in armed combat with oppositional forces. It's simply a hazard of adventuring.

Combat is resolved much like any other challenge, except that many foes take a few blows to vanquish.

When a monster or NPC or bear is attacking a player character, the player makes a Defense roll to avoid damage and more bears. When making a Defense roll, the player adds his/her Trait Bonus + any bonuses from armor or magic items to 2d6.

6- = Failure; player takes full damage from the attack. Also, bears.
7-9 = Partial Success; player takes half damage and must now contend with bears.
10+ = Critical success! No damage to the player, which is good because of all the bears.

Conversely, when attacking a foe the player adds Trait bonus, plus any bonuses from weapons or magical equipment to 2d6. The player can choose to target multiple foes, but they suffer a -2 penalty for each additional target.

6- = Failure; player does not damage the target(s), and the target receives reinforcements in the form of bears.
7-9 = Partial Success; player deals half damage to target(s), but alas more bears.
10+ Critical Success! Player deals full damage to target(s); this damage does not apply to bears appearing during the resolution of this action.

Combat unfolds over the course of round and turns. Each combatant gets a turn in order of initiative wherein they can make one action. After each combatant has taken their turn, a new round begins at the top of the initiative count.

Initiative – I dunno...go whenever you want. I'm not your goddamn mom.

Adventuring

Oh come on man, you're killing me! Just wing it.

Okay fine. Group travels overland at the rate of 2d6 miles per hour. 3D6 with mounts. For every 10 miles traveled, make a Basic action roll, adding any relevant Trait bonuses to determine bears.

In extreme or hazardous conditions such as severe weather, inhospitable environment, exposure and starvation, the player characters lose 1d6 Life Points per day and can only regain ¼ the normal amounts of Life Points from rest; also they suffer a -2 penalty against bears.

When a character completes a short rest (~15 – 30 minutes), he or she regains 1d6 Life Points. This value increases by 1d6 at levels 2,6 and 10.

When a character completes an extended rest (~6 – 8 hours), he or she regains 1d6 Life Points + an additional 1d6 per level.

During each rest, the BM should make a check for wandering bears.

Enemies

Creation of monsters and NPC's pretty much follows character creation. The BM assigns and ranks the monster's/NPC's Traits and derived stats according to level when generating them above 1st level.

“Mook” type monsters like Orcs, Bandits, Goblins and Italians are set at level 0.

Level 0 mooks get:

2 traits, Ranked 1 and 2.
1d6 Life Points
1d3 damage

They get to choose one of the following for equipment

Poor armor and 1 poor weapon
1 Average weapon
Average Armor
Bear whistle

They also get 1d6 credits.

Example:

Klingon

Level 0 mook
Traits – Proud Warrior (+4); Steaky thighs (+2)
Life Points 4 (1d6 +1 Armor)
Damage 1d3+1

Poor weapon; poor armor; 3 (1d6) currency

Bears

Level 1 monster
Traits – Bear! (+6); Loves picka-nick baskets (+4); Shits in the woods (+2)
Life Points (6)
Damage 1d6 + Claws

7 (2d6) currency

Lich

Level 5 monster
Traits - Undead Sorcerer (+6); Zombie Minions (+6); Possessor of Dark, Forbidden Knowledge (+4) Really Misses Mac N' Cheese...not the cheap shit from the box, but that good, rich, gooey stuff your mom made from scratch on Sundays: with that golden brown crust of bread crumbs and she'd even bake it with ham or bacon mixed in. God what I wouldn't do for a plate of that...but my tongue is too dessicated to even taste anything. Plus she's not wild about the whole Lich thing. She wanted me to be a dentist. Can you believe it? Me! A dentist! (+2)
Life Points 20 (6 + 4d6)
Damage 3d6

Necronomicon; spell reagents; dusty robes; passive-aggressive birthday card; 21 currency

Great Red Dragon

Level 10 monster
Traits – Ancient and Terrible Foe (+6); Breath of Flame and Destruction (+6); Colossal Beast (+6); Terror of the Smoke-filled Skies (+6); Draconic Greed (+2); Played by Benedict Cumberbatch (+2)
Life Points 40 (6 + 9d6 + Armor)
Damage 5d6+3 (claws and teeth and flame)

Vast hoard of treasure; Great red scales impervious to flame; Journals of ancient, lost histories; A “Best Revival” Olivier Award for 2010's After The Dance.

Example of Play

Dave (BM): Okay Musclethor, Delilah and Professor Huh???, the three of you climb up onto the ledge at the top of Mount Surname and see the dreaded Ogre, Thugnutz. He stands on his feet and bellows a challenge, swinging his great club at YOU, Musclethor...what do you do?

Seth: Musclethor uses his “Half-Sasquatch” trait to plant his giant feet and parry the blow with his battleaxe. He rolls a 9 total, so a partial success.

Dave: Okay...you manage to deflect the ogre's blow, but you are knocked back into the mud. A bear appears, and swipes it's massive claws at you, Delilah...

Preetha: Okay...I use my “Smarter Than The Average Bear” trait to teleport behind the bear, and pluck it's eye out with my dagger. I rolled...darn! Only a 4!

Dave: So you get behind the bear, but it sees through your subterfuge and swats you away. Two bears appear. What are you doing, Professor Huh???

Trevor: I use my “God of Space and Time” trait to banish all of the bears from the material plane and seal the way close behind them for all time. And I rolled...13! Critical success!

Dave: Good job! The bears fade out of existence, and the way between worlds shimmers and closes with a shudder of finality.

Group: Cheers!

Dave: Four bears appear.

Trevor: Fuck you, Dave! I'm missing Scandal for this!

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OgreBattle
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Dang this game sounds even more lite and imaginative than my fantasy heartbreaker: Magic Tower Patrol
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radthemad4
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I like how average armor is cheaper than poor armor

Okay, let me give this a shot.

Sir Bearington

Life Points: 6

Rolled 17 wealth

Adventurer's Kit
Poor Weapons: 1d6+ level Claws

Traits:

Bears are my allies +6
Bear! +4
Bluff +2
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Dean
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 12:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Only problem I see is a "Bear Calling" trait would be totally OP.
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fectin
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2014 3:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Bravo.
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Hiram McDaniels
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Joined: 15 Sep 2014
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 5:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

radthemad4 wrote:
I like how average armor is cheaper than poor armor

Okay, let me give this a shot.

Sir Bearington

Life Points: 6

Rolled 17 wealth

Adventurer's Kit
Poor Weapons: 1d6+ level Claws

Traits:

Bears are my allies +6
Bear! +4
Bluff +2


Awesome! You're gonna get sooo many bears!
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JigokuBosatsu
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I wasn't so sure about you, McD, but at the very least you have created a legit hack of the *World games. Good show.
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8d8
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 09, 2014 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

This is lovely.
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Dean
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 10, 2014 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I just noticed that the guy running the game is called the BM. Wonderful.
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RedstoneOrc
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2014 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I just read the example play and laughed so much I became undead thanks a lot dude.
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Ikeren
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 8:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I stumbled into this because I forgot the name Apocolypse World, and had to google "Bear World" to remember that it was called Apocolypse World.

And then I laughed until I sobbed for 5 minutes.
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First post and the quote tags are already fucked, this promises to be a clever deconstructionist look at source book reviews.
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Hicks
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PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2017 11:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Picture and relevant link below.

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Hiram McDaniels
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Haha. I forgot about writing this. Some guy on the SA:TG forums read it and called me an asshole. Worth it for that alone.
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